Friday, May 28, 2010

pop culture NON-BLOW OFF of the day: Married Life

We bitch a lot about break ups on this site, but truth be told, we've all experienced the kind of relationship bliss that keeps us hoping that maybe one day, we'll never be blown off again.  So, for all of you readers with a sentimental side, here's my favorite movie montage of all time (my bf can attest to me basically having an emotional breakdown while watching it). 

Set to an Academy Award winning score by Michael Giacchino (the same guy who did the music for LOST), this sequence on the highs and lows of married life from the movie Up is pitch perfect.  Here's to all of you experiencing that kind of love.  Happy weekend!  

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

The Baby-Handed Hygienist BLOW OFF

I was referred to my dentist by a co-worker who told me that Dr. L was a great dentist.  She told me I had to be sure on my visit to check out two things: the albino frog in the tank in the waiting room; and Barry, the hygienist with the softest hands she’s ever felt.  On my first visit, I check out the frog while I wait for my cleaning (creepy) and then I meet Barry (creepier).  My co-worker did not exaggerate.  Barry had the softest hands of any adult I had ever met.  I never felt hands so soft on anyone over the age of 1 year.  I remarked on it, and we had a laugh.  Yes, everyone tells him that.  No, he doesn’t do anything in particular to keep them that soft.  They are just naturally that way.

During my cleaning, Barry praises my dental hygiene.  I pull a pack of floss out of my pocket to prove to him that I do indeed have floss on me at all times.  He tells me I’m the perfect woman.  I laugh it off, awkwardly, as he’s in the middle of cleaning my teeth and I also don’t really want any non-dental compliments from Barry.

Once the cleaning is done and Dr. L examines me and I am at reception checking out, Barry comes up to me and asks if I’d like to go get a cup of coffee.  Ugh.  No.  I so don’t want to go get a cup of coffee with Barry and his freakishly soft hands.  But this is awkward.  I thought I was in a safe zone, where I could touch a man’s hands and show him my floss and not have him read anything more into it.  But there he is, eagerly smiling at me, and I relent.  My office is only two blocks away, and there is a Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf on the block between Dr. L’s office and mine.  Barry asks how he can get in touch with me.  You have my number, don’t you? I reply.  He offers me a freakishly soft hand to shake and I depart.

Sure enough, the following day Barry calls me.  How about that coffee?  He wants to know.  Oh yeah, well I’m pretty busy this week but next week we can go to the Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf down the block one morning.  But Barry has another idea.  He wants to take me to a different coffee place, one a few miles away that has a fire pit and outdoor seating.  Oh no, I tell him.  I don’t go west of the 405.  The one down the block is much better for me.  OK, he says.  He can’t go in the mornings because he has to work and I can’t go after work because I don’t want to.  I end it all with a “I’ll call you when I get less busy” line and that’s that.  Blow off complete.

But I started to stew a bit afterwards.  How unprofessional of him to put me in that position, I think.  Did he really interpret my fascination at his freakishly soft hands as some sort of come-on?  He was in the same category as the albino frog, couldn’t he see that?  And what would Dr. L say?  She undoubtedly wouldn’t appreciate him chasing off the clientele.  I liked Dr. L, she accepted my insurance and her office was extremely conveniently located.  I didn’t want Barry putting those baby soft hands on me or in my mouth ever again, damn him!  Solution: I called Dr. L’s office and asked that from now on, Barry not perform my cleanings.  No problem, the receptionist said.  She'll put a note in my file.  No questions asked.  I got the feeling she’s heard that request before.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Glossary of a BLOW OFF: Fappy

Fappy
Function: Adjective
Origin: Since right this second when I made it up
Definition: the act of pretending to be happy after a blow off. (i.e. fake + happy = fappy.)

(It's so painful to watch John act fappy. We all know he's crying on the inside ever since Jane dumped his ass.")

Ugh. You've been blown off and it sucks, but there's only a select few bff's you're comfortable enough with to hyperventilate and drip snot in front of. As for the rest of the world, facebook friends included, you have to pretend getting blown off was the BEST thing that ever happened to you. So, what do you do? You get an awesome new haircut, talk to anyone who will listen about how great it is to finally have more time on your hands, update your status every twenty minutes with all the cool new things you're doing, and maybe drunkenly throw yourself at a palate cleanser. You're not fooling any of us Fappy Fapperson, because behind closed doors, you are crying in bed and listening to How's it Gonna Be for the 50th time. It's okay, we're here for you. and your new haircut? Totally hot.

Monday, May 24, 2010

BLOWING OFF email rage

I've been known to suffer from email rage and I'm really good at being bitchy.  This is a deadly combination.  On more than a couple of occasions (particularly when it came to work emails) I've instantly regretted hitting the send button in response to an email that rubs me the wrong way.  Actually, scratch that--- the regret isn't instant--- it only comes when I get a return email chiding me for my attitude (once, no joke, HR was cc'd).

Here's my problem.  I get pissed and react right away.  I don't take deep breathes.  I don't count to ten.  I don't let other people get the last word and sometimes I even reply to all.  In my defense, some people are way worse than I am, at least I never use ALL CAPS or multiple !!!!!! when engaging in an email argument.

CNN.com recently published an article on email rage which starts from the urge to react quickly.  These days, when I get the need to write a response while my blood is still boiling, I save it as a draft and sleep on it.  Usually, the next day or even the next hour, I come to my senses and write a much milder response.   Another great rule to go by is to respond face to face or with a phone call.  No one wants their temporary meltdown saved forever and forwarded to friends, families, co-workers....or to theblowoffwtf@gmail.com.

I've never had a romance end over email, but I've had a couple of big fights with girlfriends via the information super highway.   I guess it's a safer way to argue, you state your side of the story without any interruptions.  The thing is, sometimes letting people interrupt you while you're on a tirade is a good thing.  Not to mention, so much in email is misconstrued. Something that reads bitchy, might sound totally non-threatening when verbalized.  I'm super paranoid about things coming off the wrong way and while I avoid the all caps and the exclamation marks, I am a big supporter of smiley faces :)

So, readers: spill.  Have any of your relationships been impacted  by a bout of email rage? Comment below!

  

Friday, May 21, 2010

the BLOW OFF mix tape

Do you need a little blow off music in your life and a song of the day isn't enough?  Check out my friend Erin's awesome blog: mix-tape.  She made a mix inspired by our little blog!   And while you're there, listen to her covers of Fearless by Cyndi Lauper and Here Comes Your Man by the Pixies.  Her voice is super good and her blog reminds me of all the pretty things in Anthropologie.

Below is the track list for the blow off mix tape.  Go to her blog to listen!  

1.  How Do You Tell Someone- Cowboy Mouth
2. His Latest Flame- Elvis Presley
3. Mr. Brightside- The Killers
4. Maggie May- Rod Stewart
5. Fuck and Run- Liz Phair
6. Breakin' Up- Rilo Kiley
7. Gonna Get Along Without You Now- She & Him
8. Build Me Up Buttercup- The Foundations
9. Your Ex-Lover is Dead- Stars
10. Temporary One- Fleetwood Mac

Thursday, May 20, 2010

the red flag BLOW OFF

A good friend of mine had a first date last week and wasn't sure if a certain quality about the guy she went out with should be considered a "red flag."  After a couple minutes of analysis among a few other girls, we decided that it could be a red flag or a first date hiccup and that she should give it a second date.   

The whole thing got me thinking that red flags are kind of a pain in the ass.  We usually don't recognize them until after a relationship is over and then we just feel stupid that we didn't see the rupture coming from a mile away.  So, in an effort to make all your dating lives a little easier, here's a top ten list of  some of the ones you should pay attention to:

10.  Girls who will never pay for dinner.  These bitches also won't marry you unless you buy them a big enough engagement ring.

9.  Guys who only date Asian girls.  They will break up with you.   (this only applies to non-Asian girls).  

8.  Girls who go through guys phones, emails, etc.  (PS I've totally done this)

7.  Guys who wear Ed Hardy T-shirts.  This is the douche bag uniform of all time.

6.  Girls who practice premature we-jaculation.  In other words, they use the word "we" way too soon in a relationship.  These dumb asses are clingy.  

5.  Guys who constantly want to buy you things.  We have our own money and we're not prostitutes.  

4.  Girls who wear a lot of make up.   If their face and their neck are different colors, then that 401K of yours is going to life long nips and tucks.  

3.  Guys who still live with their mothers.   By the time they are forty, they will dress up like her and murder you in the shower.  

2.  Girls who don't eat.  They are closet eaters who can't properly enjoy a good meal.  (and they probably only give BJs with the lights off).    

1.  Guys who don't drink.  Unless you're going through the twelve steps, you best order a beer or glass of wine at dinner.   You are boring sober.  

And....your welcome .  

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

pop culture BLOW OFF of the day: we can't afford to hate or love.

When news broke last fall that James Franco was going to be on General Hospital, the overall reaction was: WTF?  I worked with the show at the time and I was equally confused by his apparent interest in soaps.  Now, it seems there was more of a performance art element to Franco's extended cameo, but I don't care.  I'm psyched he's coming back on the show.   I just hope more people tune in to watch this time.

So: if the below clip in all its homo-erotic campiness doesn't entice you to watch, I don't know what will. Let me break it down for you.  Franco plays an artist slash serial killer who's obsessed with GH's staple hit man Jason Morgan.  Franco finally gets to meet the object of his affection and he's sorely disappointed.   It's the worst kind of BLOW OFF: the kind where you realize the person you admire most doesn't live up to your expectations.  Poor Franco!
                          

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Get Set, Get Ready, or BLOW OFF


The whole "timing is everything" phrase is such a cliche, but I've realized truer words have never been spoken. Why? Because somewhere in the creases of my dating history--- in search of a new blog post--- I remembered: I once blew off what may have been the perfect guy, merely because I wasn't ready.

The details are hazy. It was either my junior or senior year in college at Berkeley. I think I'd either spent the night at a friend's house in San Francisco or spent the night in Oakland babysitting...but it was the morning, I was tired, and I was taking the BART back into Berkeley. There was a cute guy sitting a couple rows behind me and across the aisle. I have no idea how we started talking, I think maybe he asked me how to get to College Avenue once he got off the train. Then he moved up a few rows and before I knew it we were engaged in a full on conversation.

His name was Kwamena. He was a few years older than me. He'd grew up in Ghana where he played soccer and moved to the states when he got into Brown. He said he loved Berkeley, because it reminded him of Providence. He worked at an internet company now and clearly liked his job, but was just getting adjusted to life in the Bay Area. He had an amazing accent and confessed that he was on his way to pick up his car, because he'd had a terrible date in Berkeley the night before and to add insult to injury, he'd locked his keys in his car.

When we got off the train, I offered to walk with him in the direction of where he had parked. I lived on College Ave and the walk from downtown Berkeley to the south side of campus could be confusing for a tourist. We arrived at my apartment first and he asked me if I'd let him take me out to lunch. I thought: when do I ever meet cute boys from Ghana on the BART who actually want to take me to lunch? Never. This kind of stuff only happens in movies. So, we went to lunch at La Mediterranee, which was one of my favorite spots. The meal was great and he even said he was thankful for the terrible date and for locking his keys in his car, because otherwise he wouldn't have met me. I was smitten.

But then...he started calling a lot and I panicked. I felt like he was too nice to get involved with unless I was a 100% sure that I liked him, and I worried that since he didn't know a lot of people in the area, he might get a little clingy. I was also worried about our age difference. It was only a few years, but he had a real job and I was a college student working part time and still worried about mid-terms and papers. I was finally honest with him and told him that I just didn't feel ready to get involved with anyone. He was of course completely understanding and thanked me for being upfront. That lunch was our only date.

A couple months later, I had a little crying session in my apartment over something I don't even remember: a fight with a friend? An episode of Oprah? I was on my period? Unfortunately, when I cry, my face turns into a red puffy mess for a good couple of hours. I decided to go for a walk, get some air and some coffee, and as luck would have it, I ran straight into Kwamena on my way. He was still the nice/cute guy I remembered, and wasn't even afraid to ask me if I'd been crying. I felt like such an asshole for blowing him off and again apologized profusely, and after that I never saw him again.

When you're happy with where you are in life and who you're with, you have the luxury of no longer regretting any of your blow offs. In a way, you're so glad they all happened. But if there was an alternate universe out there, my 29 year old self might go back and kick my 21 year old self in the ass. Cause even though timing means everything, in hindsight, it's also a total cop out.

Monday, May 17, 2010

BLOWING OFF the "stuff"

I don't keep anything that reminds me of ex-boyfriends.  In fact, I make a point to throw it all away, preferably in some dramatic fashion.  When the high school boyfriend I mentioned in the rebound blow off alluded to the fact that he wanted to break up, I drove home from college so that we could talk in person.   I think at the time he thought we were going to have a state of the union address, but thanks to my mom, we had a break up instead.   I had called her crying in the middle of the night after an upsetting phone conversation with him where I asked him if he still loved me and he responded with "I don't know."   When I recounted that detail to my mom, she said that I shouldn't want to be in a relationship with someone who wasn't sure if they loved me or wanted to be with me.  That put the final nail in the coffin.  

So, I prepared for our in person meeting by making a huge pile of everything high school boyfriend had given me over the course of the two years we dated.  He even watched as I tore a Dawson's Creek poster he'd bought me off my bedroom wall.   A necklace, a ring, a bracelet, cards, drawings, etc etc.  I threw it all in a garbage bag and made him take it all home--- cause I didn't need any reminders of getting blown off.  

I've burned pictures, broken mixed CDs, thrown away heartfelt cards, deleted countless emails, donated clothing, and so on and so forth.  I've had my sentimental moments in the past and kept relationship souvenirs in shoe boxes under my bed, but inevitably something happened that warranted throwing it all away.  I don't think it's healthy to hoard items from relationships past and blowing off the stuff has always been my first step in moving on.   But not everyone has the urge to purge.   I have friends who've got ex-boyfriend reminders in their living rooms.  My BF still has a robe and pajama set that was a gift to him from his ex-gf's mom.  And some of you still have pictures with your ex's in your facebook photo albums.  Oh  no, not me.  I'd delete that shit within minutes of a break up.   So, readers-- where do you stand on blowing off the stuff?  Totally necessary or totally immature? 

Friday, May 14, 2010

the rebound BLOW OFF

It was sophomore year in college and I'd just been dumped by my high school boyfriend who I'd actually dumped six months prior.   We had stupidly decided to give things another shot and when he broke up with me, I was totally blindsided.   I felt that empty anxious I'm all alone feeling for about a month after our break up and then on a park bench in the middle of our campus quad, I met this guy who'd also just been dumped.   Initially, it just felt nice to trade war stories, but then he started coming by my dorm room all the time and asking me to hang out and go see him play music.  That might sound sexy, but he had actually done one of those create your own majors and his was some sort of combo computer science/music major.  So, watching him play music literally meant listening to electronic beats that were signaled by the direction a stuffed animal Big Bird moved his eyes.  Seriously.  

Deep down, I knew he wasn't someone I'd ever be interested in dating seriously, but I thought I was long overdue for my first post blow off date.  So, I agreed to have coffee with him.

The date was awful and super awkward and just made me more depressed about my break up. Suddenly, the guy I briefly considered a kindred spirit just seemed creepy and strange.   I hated him for asking me out and I hated my ex boyfriend for dumping me and putting me in this situation in the first place.   I don't remember the exact details of the coffee date and why I was so miserable, but I do remember that we had to take a bus back to campus together.   Maybe he realized I wasn't interested and was trying to save face or he thought I'd be turned on, but all of a sudden he started telling me about this girl that lived down the hall with him in the dorms that he'd been having sex with.  It would have been one thing to just reference the girl he was sleeping with, but Mr. Big Bird was very detailed.  He told me about the positions they'd done it in, her affinity for talking dirty, and the scratch marks on his back.  I was trapped on the bus with him, I didn't know what do except nod and pretend I was interested.  I'm pretty sure I went home and cried after.   As far as rebounds go, I guess a good rule of thumb is if the mere sight of the person gives you heebeegeebees, maybe it's worth it to wait on the whole moving on thing.  

Thursday, May 13, 2010

BLOW OFF Song of the day: End of the Road by Boyz II Men

For all of our readers that can't let go:



"Although we've come to the end of the road, still I can't let go. It's unnatural. You belong to me, I belong to you."
-Boyz II Men, 1993

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Glossary of a BLOW OFF: Boyfiend Girls

Boyfriend Girls
Function: Noun
Origin: since forevs
Definition: 1. females who somehow, without fail, always have a boyfriend.

("Jane's a boyfriend girl, that bitch hasn't been single since grade school.")

I'm guessing you either know a boyfriend girl or you are a boyfriend girl. Not to pass judgement (famous last words), but I've never really understood how these girls do it. Yes, I need alone time and space to reflect between relationships, BUT even if I wanted to go from one boyfriend to the next, I couldn't. I've had dry spells. Days, weeks, months between BLOW OFFs where there isn't a prospect in sight. Are these girls just not as picky as the rest of us? Do they never completely blow someone off unless they know there is another guy waiting in the wings? Maybe I'm wrong to single out the chiquitas here, but I've got to hand it to you dudes, most of you are pretty good at not getting seriously involved with the ladies when you want to be "single".

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

pop culture BLOW OFF of the day: So, how do you feel?

I don't think when Kevin Williamson created Dawson's Creek, he predicted that Pacey and Joey would emerge as the stars of the show (sorry Van Der Beek). I for one was always team Pacey. Here's a clip of Joey finally giving in to her feelings for Pacey, even though they both know it means blowing off their friendship with the show's title character.

Monday, May 10, 2010

I had to BLOW YOU OFF (or else you wouldn't be a one night stand)


A great one night stand story from one of our readers. (Remember, you too can send us your story at theblowoffwtf@gmail.com):

This is the story of my first and last one night stand, which also happens to coincide with hands down, one of the best nights of living in the NYC. The night read like a montage in a witty and smart romantic comedy. It could have been the beginning of a beautiful relationship. But instead it was just another blow off....

Part One: that Union Sqaure Bar I can't seem to remember

It all started with a bar in Union Square (yes, the one I can't seem to remember) where 'lil guns and roses'played a set. I mean, that alone is just awesome: A little girl with long blonde hair playing the part of Axl Rose? Amazing. CUT TO:

I'm at the bar next to this 'Smith Jerrod' looking guy who immediately gets friendly, buys drinks, and walks me back to the roof deck to find my sister, already engaged in conversation with some hotness. The guy is going on and on about lil guns and roses and how they have a huge following in his homeland of Latvia. We were hooked for a good 30 minutes - I mean we'd never met anyone from Latvia so who were we to say if his accent was fake? The truth finally surfaced. The guy was actually from another foreign land: Queens.

It could have been the drinks, the perfect new york night weather or lil guns and roses tunes still floating in our heads, whatever it was, Latvia and Smith Jerrod were there to stay, by our side for the night.

Part Two: Duane Reade

En route to meet some friends at the Beauty Bar, me and my new partner in crime decided to take a detour. Yes, one might think we snuck into some NY alley for a quick make-out session, but NO this detour was about my feet. They'd been killing me all night from my killer black heels and Smith Jerrod being the gentleman that he was, made me stop at Duane Reade for a pair of plastic grandma wedge shoes. Let me help you conjure up the image: they were uglier than crocs. And because we were very drunk, we also walked out of there sporting matching tropical print visors. So, here I am with rolled up jeans, ugly grandma shoes and a tropical visor. I mean, I looked like I belonged in a Florida retirement home, not the streets of Manhattan. Regardless, Smith and I were laughing to tears, hand-in-hand, skipping into the Beauty Bar.

Part Three: the M15 bus

Post Beauty Bar, me, Smith, my sister and a few other friends wandered the streets of the East Village aimlessly (well, not that aimlessly. We were conveniently close to my apartment). Just as we were moments away from one night stand bliss, the M15 bus pulled up. Before I knew what was happening, Smith dragged me on to the bus and we happily waved good bye to our friends who watched us drive off like we were crazy. The bus ride only lasted 2 blocks to a nearby flower stand where Smith proceeded to buy me a sunflower. This may sound romantic, but it just added to the hilarity and randomness of the evening.

Part four: the morning after

The one night stand did come to fruition and the blow-off came the morning after. Even in the hung-over morning hours I knew this night would go down as one of the best nights of my NYC life. It was the kind of night you just don't have in other cities and I had to do everything it took to make sure it stayed that way. So, as Smith Jerrod was pulling himself together, asking for my phone #, I replied "nah, but we'll always have lil' guns and roses."

Friday, May 7, 2010

Blowing Off the Hollywood Ending

My parents moved while I was in college so when I found myself in one of their spare bedrooms, saving up to move to LA after graduation, I didn't have any old friends around for comfort (or distraction from my ultimate goal). After a brief stint as an executive assistant, I landed a job serving crawfish and beer in a local restaurant.

I liked my job and my co-workers, but beyond vaguely telling them I was interested in writing, I didn't advertise my Hollywood-bound intentions because 1) The girl with one foot out the door might not get all the hours she wanted and 2) I didn't want them to privately laugh at me the way I might if they confessed similar aspirations.

Since I didn't have any old friends around and I was saving for a cross-country move, I didn't go out much. That changed when I met Ryan, a cute stockcar racer my co-worker Mandi set me up with. I tried to protest meeting him, I even confessed that I was putting in my two weeks notice soon and heading out to California, but Mandi insisted. He was a younger guy on her dad's racing team and she thought we'd click.

Out of boredom and the vague notion that a fling might be fun, I agreed. Mandi and I headed down a long country road to her dad's place, where there was a BBQ in progress. There was a band and as we made our way past lots of fancy car parts in the garage, I stumbled upon Ryan getting someone's mother a second serving of brisket.

I like country boys, guys who open doors and say "Yes'm" and "No, sir," guys with big trucks and worn-in baseball caps. Ryan also had a hotrod, which he took me to see that very first night. You'll be shocked to learn we ended up making out against the tin siding of the garage where it was kept.

BLOWING OFF the M Word, part II

When someone comments on a blow off post that I'm not related to or not living with, it pretty much makes my day.   So, when "Dhane" posted an extra long comment on the Marriage Benefit Imbalance or BLOWING OFF the M word, I nearly wanted to send him a gift basket.   I thought his comment was thought provoking and worth sharing with the rest of you.  Plus, I love a healthy debate between the sexes and I've been dying to get a male contributor up in this piece. 

Here's our comment exchange below:

3 COMMENTS:

Dhane said...

My intial feeling was to respond in a nasty condesending way to get my point across about the absurdity of this misguided take on who benefits in marriage.... but being a man, I know better than to try to present a rational case for disagreement in that manner. It would be a no win situation in which female readers of the post would skirt over any rational points with full comfort in their instinct and feeling of your original statement being right (because it benefits them personally/women as a whole and doesnt require consideration of the "sacrifice" from a mans perspective - even in a humorous context). 

From the honest male perspective I will offer you a vantage point which is not as rosy as the book excerpt cited nor your interpretation of the excerpt, but you can take it as merely a contribution for the sake of balance OR predictably write me off as the bad guy who doesnt reflect the thoughts of guys in general, and especially not your guy!(wink). 

While statistically benefits of longer living, wealth etc seem to favor married men on paper, you are not accounting for the sacrifice required for a guy to enter into marriage nor for the fact that the single men dying violent deaths and suffering from more alcoholism, etc are probably influenced by prison populations, and unstable men on the fringes of society - who ironically may have once been that married guy "getting all the benefit". I wonder how many of those alcoholics were driven to drink by their marriages? 

my point is, these guys are not 50 yr old men with good jobs and a harem of women who are wishing they had a wife as they die with a heroin needle in their arm.

For men we are known as being commitment phobes because we know for all of its joys and the bliss of companionship, marriage is: 

a difficult lifetime of abandonment of many freedoms and comforts formerly enjoyed when single and making your own decisions/controlling your own destiny, is the entrance into a world of confrontational nonsensical-ness in which women use emotions as a failsafe for disagreements no matter the logic it flies in the face of. aka the time when :'i feel this way' trumps 'that doesnt make sense'

a trading in of fun and activities that once reaffirmed an inate sense of manhood for a more tame and controlled existance under a watchfull eye and the fear of constant nagging.

a permanent exile from being able to enjoy variety in life 

an automatic compromising of goals and defermment of dreams that have gone unrealized

an unatural and constant battle to try to remain monogamous although nature has wired us differently

constant berating for yearning to do things that would otherwise come naturally - because of someone else's perception or fear of how it makes them look. 

a lifetime laundry list of issues and things that should be worked on for the betterment of "us" when in reality they are to give 'her' what she wants

bit by bit changing of who you are asa person until you cant recognize yourself.

saaara said...

i think we should call it a draw, cause i actually don't disagree with everything that you say and won't be skirting over the rational points in which i think there are many. i get why guys would be scared to get married and i think that a lot of the reasons you listed surrounding that fear are how a lot of women are feeling too these days. especially the "bit by bit changing who are as a person until you can't recognize yourself." thanks for your comment, i'm gonna give it it's own blog post.

Dhane said...

sorry, went off on a bit of a rant, but it is more of a "why dont we all stay single because its a trade off for everyone" diatribe


So, I know a lot of our readers and several of our contributors are married.   Are us single folks way off?   Comment below.  Who knows, you might just get a gift basket out of it.  

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

The Cyclical BLOW OFF

I’ve been trying to remember a good blow off story in which I did the blowing off. It took so much effort that I came to the conclusion I was one hell of a doormat back in my dating days. And that’s when memories of 'Don' surfaced. He was my first serious boyfriend (if you don’t count ‘going with’ my middle school romeo for 9 months). Somewhere around the first week of my freshman year in college I was kind of assigned Don.  After Rush, I was immediately taken under the wing of a group of mostly seniors from my sorority. Don was the one eligible bachelor in the group of guys my ‘sisters’ were dating. They presented me like the fresh meat I was and he took the bait hook line and sinker… well, not exactly sinker.

Although he was perfectly happy to have me on his arm and in his bed, he didn’t think he needed to legitimize my status in his life by making me his actual girlfriend. At first I didn’t care that it was casual; early on I was dating other people. Then when I started to care, I was too chicken to push the point (story of my life). After about four or five months, on a particularly angsty evening, I held his feet to the fire. He would not be corralled, regardless of the fact that it was only a matter of semantics. We were spending every night together and most of every day. He hadn’t gone out with anyone else since we met. He wouldn’t have been giving anything up or changing anything but it seemed the possibility that someone else could come along was more appealing to him than the reality of me.

So I decided he was too stubborn to be worth my fidelity. If he couldn’t be man enough to own up to what we were, then I didn’t need to pull myself off the dating market for him. I reigned in the amount of time I spent with him and another guy came on the scene; we’ll call him the one that got away. I should have left Don eating my dust for this one. He’s an actual example of an efficient blow off that I initiated but that’s another post all together.

Don was a sore loser and a big crier. I’m a huge sucker for a bawling man. I don’t know what it is about their vulnerability suddenly streaming down their faces but it dilutes all my logic and resolve immediately. Seeing me with the one that got away made Don realize how much he loved me, blah, blah, blah. And so our cycle began. We would fight and break up and then I would meet someone new and suddenly Don would repent all his sins and beg for me to take him back.

This completely illogical and largely annoying cycle continued for two years. We broke up and got back together at least five times. I think somewhere deep down (and sometimes right on the surface) I knew it would never work with us but I was eighteen and I didn’t know any better than to equate unbelievably hot sex with undying love.   At the time, I kept blaming our problems on the situation. We were always on his turf.  I lived in the dorm and then in the sorority house so he never got to be in my space with me. We were constantly with his roommate and his lost-boy-esque friends. Then I left the sorority (cause lets face it they suck) and got my own apartment. I had only been there a few weeks when one night Don came over after work to find me watching Frasier. When we were on his turf we watched nothing but sports center or whatever video game the lost boys happened to be playing. It turned out the humor of Frasier was too highbrow for Don. It hit me: we couldn’t do the one most basic thing two humans can do together, watch TV. It had to end.

For about six weeks he tried to keep the cycle going. One evening he just had to see me. He wanted to tell me all about how he had gotten ‘saved’ in the mall parking lot by a co-worker. Don’s parents were devout Buddhists. Don, himself, wasn’t much of anything, but in complete desperation he was willing to be whatever he thought I wanted him to be. He missed the boat on that entirely. Although, I was raised in a Christian church, it wasn’t a Baptist one and I happen to think the whole I’m going to get ‘saved’ on a whim thing (and potentially over and over and over again) is just plain silly. Unfortunately, after two years Don still didn’t know me well enough to know that. All he knew was that his standard cycle perpetuating make-up attempts weren’t working. It was time to cut him off.  We eventually became friends but not until a lot of time had passed and I was sure the cycle was completely broken.

the disappearing BLOW OFF

the most common BLOW OFF I've experienced is the kind where you don't get a break up call, text, or email. Instead you get a big fat break up nothing.  I guess it's possible that some of these guys died tragically right as they were about to call me back, but chances are they wimped out and couldn't be bothered with saying "I don't like you like that."  

in the 21st century, it can be hard to understand why people pussy out so bad when it comes to break ups. Yeah, it can be scary to end a relationship with someone face to face, but these days you don't have to.  So, when someone still opts to just fade away, you have to wonder why they couldn't at least write you on your facebook wall.  
my theory: the disappearing blow off takes place more commonly in new relationships. You haven't really been dating the person long enough to warrant a break up talk and maybe you're not even sure if you're dating the person in the first place.  You know, when you're hanging out with someone you only like platonically, but you aren't sure if they feel the same way, and you don't want to lead them on, but you don't want to make a fool of yourself by bringing up a "do you like me like that, because I don't like you like that" talk if they didn't like you like that in the first place.  You follow?

Anyway, the disappearing blow off is amongst the most frustrating, because it gives you no closure.  People say no answer is the answer (see the book He's Just Not That Into You)  but that's still not concrete enough for me.   Truth be told, I've used the technique myself.   I did it, because I wasn't interested in the person and all the other hints I was dropping were going unnoticed. And I didn't feel like the relationship had gone on long enough to have a discussion about my lack of interest.   So, I just stopped returning phone calls and told myself it was okay to pull the old disappearing act, because I'd been on the other end of it too.   I guess it's just another cycle of break up violence that I don't think will be broken anytime soon.  

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

BLOW OFF Song of the day: Cryin' by Aerosmith

Remember when Alicia Silverstone was the queen of the music video, when Stephen Dorff had a promising career ahead of him,  and when MTV actually played videos?   Those were the good old days...


"I was cryin' when I met you, now I'm dyin' to forget you.  Love is sweet misery."
-Aerosmith, 1993

Monday, May 3, 2010

An open BLOW OFF letter to Facebook

Dear Facebook,  
You are a huge enabler.  You make it okay for us to keep tabs on people we've dated and it's just not healthy.   There used to be this thing called a "clean break up."   A couple could call it quits and unless they had a ton of mutual friends, they could pretend like the other person never even existed and move on with their life.  But now, thanks to you Facebook and your status updates, all of us social networkers can look at our newsfeed to find out when our exes are taking a shit.  

It used to be that only celebrities had to see pictures of their ex with their new gf/bf on the cover of magazines.   But now  all it takes is one tagged photo and all of us regular folks have to endure the same thing.   Screw you, Facebook!   I don't want to see wedding pictures of a guy who's touched my boobs.  (okay okay, I'll admit, it's cool with me that guys I've used to date can see pics of the BF, because he's awesome).

Another thing, Facebook.  When it's 2am and i'm tipsy and curious, I end up friend requesting guys I've made out with once and haven't talked to in years.  This guy wrote back and asked me if I could remind him who I was.   Thanks, Facebook.  I really needed the extra humiliation there.  One time, I contemplated adding a guy, only to (thank god) remember that he and his dad have the same name, and it was actually his dad's Facebook page.  WTF, Facebook, do you realize how embarrassing that would have been?

And if I didn't already feel like a stalker, FB, I now also know that my boyfriend's ex is dating a guy that looks exactly like him.   Can you please remind people to update their privacy settings?  

Look, I don't mean to come off angry FB.  Especially since I've reconnected with a lot of people I really like and since I've luckily never gone through a break up while your site existed.  But I know for a fact that you've made a lot of my friend's break up experiences even more painful and I feel the need to contact you on their behalves.  Cause sometimes some of us are not strong enough to block or delete someone (especially since when we do it becomes the be all and end all symbolic gesture).    I'm not expecting you to change or make amends, I just wanted you to know that you're responsible for a lot of sadness, humiliation, and confusion.

xoxo
Saaara

PS Can you please tell people to stop tagging ugly pictures of me?